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Tenontosaurus with Head
This from NY Times.
`The shapes of things are dumb.'
February 27, 2001
At Last, Scientists Find Bones From a
Tenontosaurus That Didn't Lose Its Head
By JOHN NOBLE WILFORD
he Tenontosaurus, a large plant-eating
dinosaur, was to the predatory
Deinonychus 110 million years ago what the
wildebeest is to the lion: lunch.
Paleontologists have been turning up bones of
tenontosaurs for years in Montana and Oklahoma. But until now
failed to find an intact skeleton with a well-preserved skull.
Scientists at the University of Oklahoma reported yesterday
that they had
just excavated a nearly complete fossilized skeleton of a
almost 25 feet long.
The specimen was found in rural Atoka County, in Oklahoma,
miles southeast of Oklahoma City.
Dr. Richard L. Cifelli, a paleontologist and zoology professor
university, said this was "probably the largest and certainly
perfectly preserved Tenontosaurus ever found."
Dr. Cifelli and Dr. Nicholas J. Czaplewski, another university
paleontologist, were especially elated when researchers and
working at the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History in
Norman, finally chipped away enough of the dinosaur's rocky
reveal a complete skull.
The heads on all previous tenontosaur specimens were either
crushed and fragmented.
"I've never seen anything like it," Dr. Cifelli said in a
"The head is so perfect that even the hyoid bones, which
tongue, are preserved, and you hardly ever find fragile bones
Although the skeleton may not be ready for display for two
public may view the preparations on the museum's Web site: